Welcome to Our Internal Medicine Residency Program

Program Director Michael Feinzimer, M.D.Program Director Michael Feinzimer, M.D. 

Greetings to prospective residents:

I want to take this opportunity to personally welcome you to Swedish Covenant Health (SCH) and provide information that I hope will be helpful to you in deciding where to do your residency training.

The Residency Program in Internal Medicine was established in 2006 to meet the growing needs of the community served by SCH and to attract physicians to the medical staff who share a commitment to the institution’s strategic goals.  Fourteen program graduates have joined the medical staff, since the program’s inception in:

    a. Site-based internal medicine (hospitalist medicine)
    b. Office-based internal medicine
    c. Pulmonary medicine
    d. Critical care
    e. Gastroenterology
    g. Gerontology
Three of the graduates have assumed SCH leadership positions as Associate Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program, Director of Critical Care/Pulmonary Medicine Fellowship Program, and Chief Information Officer (CIO).  

The program is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and two years ago was granted continued accreditation, without deficiencies, by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) through 2027.     

To date 87 residents have graduated from the program and are in practice or fellowship training in hospitalist medicine, office-based internal medicine, invasive cardiology, infectious diseases, pulmonary medicine, critical care, gastroenterology, nephrology, endocrinology, critical care, rheumatology, gerontology, and palliative medicine.. 

Ninety-seven percent of program graduates, who have taken the American Osteopathic Board of Internal Medicine (AOBIM) exam, have passed on their first attempt.  The first attempt pass rate nationwide for AOA-accredited internal medicine residency programs is ninety-two percent.  Three graduates took the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) certifying examination in 2018, with many of our 2019 graduates also planning to take the ABIM boards. We will publish our board pass rates as soon as we have sufficient data.

I am often asked by candidates to describe what makes the Program “different” from other training programs.  Recently the Program Evaluation Committee completed a semi-annual review of the program and identified the following strengths:
  • The one-to-one faculty-resident ratio on many sub-specialty rotations
  • The autonomy residents are afforded in a nurturing and supportive teaching-learning environment
  • The opportunity to develop instructional skills needed to teach an audience of mixed learners, i.e., medical students and residents, in different educational settings, including management rounds, small group case presentations/discussions, lectures and conferences.
  • The opportunity to develop the psychosocial skills needed to interact with patients and family members with differing cultural backgrounds, ethnicities, religions, races, socioeconomic positions, sexual orientation, and languages.
  • The opportunity to develop patient care skills in a learning environment that reinforces the importance of basic science principles in clinical problem-solving and decision-making
  • The opportunity to develop the practice habits and attitudes needed to engage patients and family members in shared decision-making
  • The opportunity to develop evaluation and management skills in a learning environment that values and reinforces the application of evidence-based medicine to clinical problem-solving and decision-making.
  • The opportunity to develop the communication/interpersonal skills needed to lead a multi-disciplinary, cross-functional team of health care providers, e.g., nurses, social workers, physical/occupational therapists, nutritionists/dieticians, and medical assistants.  
I am also frequently asked what changes have been recently implemented or are planned for the 2019-2020 academic year. Some of the changes include:
 
  • Development of the Patient-Centered Medical Home Model of Care to enhance the training experience in the residents’ continuity clinic
  • Implementation of the Yale Office-Based Medicine Curriculum to augment the learning experience in ambulatory medicine
  • Organization of the Core Lecture Series, Journal Club, and Board Review around  pre-selected disciplines, e.g., gastroenterology, cardiology, pulmonary medicine, etc.  [For example, didactic instruction during August will be devoted to gastroenterology.]
  • Re-structuring Morning Conference, casting senior residents in the role of principle discussants, focused on interactive case-based problem-solving and decision-making 
  • Resident participation, as junior faculty, in the Introduction to Clinical Medicine course at Midwestern University/Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine.
  • Yearly administration of the Internal Medicine In-Training Examination prepared by the American College of Physicians (ACP)
  • Evaluation of resident performance by hospitalized patients as part of the Annual Culture of Safety Survey conducted by the Office of Quality Improvement and Risk Management
  • Policy additions to the Resident Handbook addressing fatigue management and conflict resolution in patient management
  • Providing resident-specific quality data, generated by the Office of Decision Support, Quality Profile, for the purpose of raising the awareness of resident-physicians to some of the quality and utilization measures used by accountable care organizations (ACOs) to evaluate the clinical performance of practitioners 
  • Resident participation in outreach programs/services designed to educate the community about primary and secondary disease prevention
I hope this information will assist you in making an informed decision about the SCH residency program.  If you have questions as you search for a program best suited to the way you want to study medicine during the next three years, please feel free to contact me.

Best wishes for your continued success.

Associate Program Director Dale Swims, D.O.Associate Program Director Dr. Dale Swims

It is my great pleasure to introduce you to the Internal Medicine Residency program at Swedish Covenant Health, where I completed my training in 2013. This is my fourth year as Associate Program Director. My approach is “hands on” and transparent in nature. I interact with the house staff 12 months a year in a variety of learning environments which include duties as a teaching attending while supervising a medicine service, conducting Morning Report sessions and working side-by-side with residents in my own outpatient clinic. 

The strengths of the residency program at Swedish Covenant Health are many, but I would like to highlight a few here. 

  • First, you will find your time spent here being supported by not only the Medical Education Department, but the hospital staff in general. Being a community-based hospital, there is a ‘team’ approach to our care and, as a resident, you will benefit from the environment that has been created here. I pride our program on how approachable the hospital team members are and how comfortable you will feel during your training here. 
  • Next, due to our location and the population we have the ability to serve, the pathology and patient experience you will encounter here is second to none. You will be more then prepared by the end of your three years of training and, I believe, our board pass rate along with job/fellowship placement speak to that. 
  • Lastly, something that I encountered as a resident was the flexibility that this program provides. Your education is our primary focus and anything that we can do to ‘mold’ this program to your needs will be pursued. It is a true open-door policy and one that our past and current residents continue to thrive in!
I look forward to having an opportunity to meet with you personally and further discuss our program. If you have any questions, please direct them our way!

Contact Us 

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact the Medical Education office at 773-989-3808 or meded@SwedishCovenant.org.